Holiday Closure Dates

This year the Research Library will be closed starting at 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, December 21, and during the following holiday period:

December 22 – January 1

Extended Readers may still use the library during the closure, with the exception of December 25 and January 1. However, library services and staff, including Circulation, Reference, and the Special Collections Reading Room, will not be available.

The library will resume regular hours on Tuesday, January 2.

Happy Holidays!

Photo caption: Christmas Eve dinner, Billy and Olga Kluver’s home, 69 Appletree Row, Berkeley Heights, New Jersey, Shunk-Kender, 1970-1971. Harry Shunk and Shunk-Kender photographs, 1957-1987. The Getty Research Institute, 2014.R.20

Getty Center to reopen, December 8

We are delighted to announce that the Getty Center and Villa will reopen for staff, visitors and school groups tomorrow, Friday, December 8, 2017. For hours and visitor information, visit

We are deeply grateful to the law enforcement and fire service personnel who worked so heroically to contain the Skirball fire. We are grateful as well for the work of Getty emergency staff.

We continue to be concerned for our neighbors across the freeway as they deal with the consequences of this fire.

Library access during Thanksgiving weekend

The Research Library will close at 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, November 22, and will reopen at 9:30 a.m. Monday, November 27.

While the library will be closed to all readers on Thursday, November 23, Extended Readers may still use the library until 9:00 p.m. on Wednesday, November 22, all day on Friday, November 24, and throughout the weekend. However, library services and staff, including Circulation, Reference, and the Special Collections Reading Room, will not be available.

Photo caption: Kindergarten Thanksgiving play (detail), Leonard Nadel, 1948. Leonard Nadel photographs and other material relating to housing and urban redevelopment in Los Angeles, Series II.B. Aliso Village. The Getty Research Institute, 2002.M.42

Research Tips for Large Archival Collection Finding Aids

The size of our archival collections varies from one folder to over 3,000 boxes spanning almost 2,000 linear feet! The medium to large archives typically have finding aids, which are documents containing detailed information about collections. Our online finding aids are linked to Primo Search collection records. For very large collections, the finding aids can be also be quite massive.

Here are some tips to keep in mind when consulting online finding aids for large collections:

1. Some collections have two finding aids. When the descriptive information for a large collection is in one finding aid, it can make the document unwieldy and can be slow to load on your computer. To ease searching and management of large files of information, we may have created a separate finding aid for individual series. You can find examples of this practice with the Harald Szeemann papers, Series II. Artist Files and the Julius Shulman photography archive, Series IV. Job Numbers, 1935-2009.

2. Use the “print view” to read and search a finding aid. The print view allows you to scroll seamlessly through the contents of a finding aid. In some cases, it’s much easier to read a finding aid in this view. The print view also allows for keyword searching. To display a keyword search box use with the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + F on a PC or Command ⌘ + F on a Mac.

To access the print view, click “Print View” at the top right side of your screen.

The print view with the keyword search box displayed.

3. Proceed with caution if you want to print a finding aid. Larger finding aids may be several hundreds of pages in a print format. For example, the Harald Szeemann papers finding aids are equivalent to more than 1,400 pages!

If you have any additional tips for viewing and searching finding aids that makes your research easier, please share them in the comments below. We would enjoy hearing from you!

– Sarah Sherman, Reference Librarian

L.A. as Subject’s 12th annual Archives Bazaar, October 21

Join the Getty Research Institute Library and 90 other exhibitors for a day celebrating Los Angeles history at the 12th annual Archives Bazaar, presented by L.A. As Subject and the USC Libraries.

This free event will take place at the beautiful Doheny Memorial Library on the campus of the University of Southern California (USC), Saturday October 21, 2017 from 9:00 am – 5:00pm.

For a complete schedule of events, list of exhibitors, directions and parking information, visit

We hope to see you there!

-Sarah Sherman, Reference Librarian